E.g., 06/25/2024
E.g., 06/25/2024
State Language Data - CA
 

California

Language & Education
2022
2000
1990
English Proficiency

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

Note: The term "foreign born" refers to people residing in the United States at the time of the population survey who were not U.S. citizens at birth. The foreign-born population includes naturalized U.S. citizens, lawful permanent immigrants (or green-card holders), refugees and asylees, certain legal nonimmigrants (including those on student, work, or some other temporary visas), and persons residing in the country without authorization.

Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 10,382,765
Speak only English 12.2%
Speak English "very well" 36.0%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 51.8%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2022 5.9%
% change: 1990-2000 42.0%
English Proficiency of the Foreign Born by U.S. Citizenship Status (age 5 and older)*

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English. Data for Alaska, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2018-2022 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2022 ACS.

 
Naturalized citizens 5,668,397
Speak only English 14.2%
Speak English "very well" 41.6%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 44.2%
Noncitizens 4,714,368
Speak only English 9.9%
Speak English "very well" 29.2%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 60.9%

Note: The term "U.S. born" refers to people residing in the United States who were U.S. citizens in one of three categories: people born in one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia; people born in U.S. Insular Areas such as Puerto Rico or Guam; or people who were born abroad to at least one U.S. citizen parent.

U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 26,528,191
Speak only English 72.6%
Speak English ""very well"" 23.4%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4.0%
Limited English Proficient (LEP) Population: Change over Time  
% change: 2000-2011 -11.6%
% change: 1990-2000 44.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 8,762,060
Speak only English 10.9%
"Speak English ""very well"" 31.1%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 57.9%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 22,654,569
Speak only English 79.7%
"Speak English ""very well"" 15.0%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 5.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 6,337,062
Speak only English 12.4%
"Speak English ""very well"" 31.2%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 56.4%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
English Proficiency (age 5 and older) (%) 21,014,236
Speak only English 85.5%
"Speak English ""very well"" 10.6%
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4.0%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
Population (age 5 and older)
 
 
Language Spoken at Home (by age and English proficiency)

Note: The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English.

Number
Ages 5-17 6,380,620
Speak only English 3,773,317
Speak language other than English 2,607,303
Speak English "very well"
2,072,370
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
534,933
Speak Spanish 1,968,363
Speak English "very well"
1,564,363
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
404,000
Ages 18-64 24,371,434
Speak only English 12,880,425
Speak language other than English 11,491,009
Speak English "very well"
7,038,706
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
4,452,303
Speak Spanish 7,433,155
Speak English "very well"
4,448,310
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
2,984,845
65 and Older 6,158,902
Speak only English 3,886,738
Speak language other than English 2,272,164
Speak English "very well"
820,789
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
1,451,375
Speak Spanish 1,059,874
Speak English "very well"
379,431
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP)
680,443
%
65 and Older 100%
Speak only English 59.1%
Speak language other than English 40.9%
Speak English "very well" 32.5%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 8.4%
Speak Spanish 30.8%
Speak English "very well" 24.5%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 6.3%
Ages 18-64 100%
Speak only English 52.9%
Speak language other than English 47.1%
Speak English "very well" 28.9%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 18.3%
Speak Spanish 30.5%
Speak English "very well" 18.3%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 12.2%
Ages 5-17 100%
Speak only English 63.1%
Speak language other than English 36.9%
Speak English "very well" 13.3%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 23.6%
Speak Spanish 17.2%
Speak English "very well" 6.2%
Speak English less than "very well" (LEP) 11.0%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
Population (age 5 and older)
 
 
Language Spoken at Home (detailed, by English proficiency)

Note: 1) The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English "not at all," "not well," or "well" on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English "very well" are considered proficient in English. 2) Data for Alaska, Arkansas, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2018-2022 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2022 ACS.

Number
Total Household Population, Age 5 and Older 36,910,956
Speak only English 20,540,480
Speak language other than English 16,370,476
Spanish 10,461,392
Speak English "very well" 6,392,104
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 4,069,288
French (Including Cajun) 129,585
Speak English "very well" 111,849
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 17,736
Haitian 9,668
Speak English "very well" 7,607
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 2,061
Italian 54,575
Speak English "very well" 45,651
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 8,924
Portuguese 94,762
Speak English "very well" 69,088
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 25,674
German 86,732
Speak English "very well" 76,644
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 10,088
Yiddish, Pennsylvania Dutch or Other West Germanic Languages 25,559
Speak English "very well" 22,017
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,542
Russian 166,465
Speak English "very well" 91,273
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 75,192
Polish 24,475
Speak English "very well" 18,072
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,403
Other Slavic Languages 72,291
Speak English "very well" 46,028
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 26,263
Armenian 197,308
Speak English "very well" 116,121
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 81,187
Persian (including Farsi, Dari) 239,633
Speak English "very well" 147,558
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 92,075
Gujarati 58,708
Speak English "very well" 42,725
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 15,983
Hindi 214,984
Speak English "very well" 178,557
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 36,427
Urdu 55,515
Speak English "very well" 40,841
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 14,674
Punjabi 154,917
Speak English "very well" 92,302
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 62,615
Bengali 38,964
Speak English "very well" 28,794
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 10,170
Nepali, Marathi, or Other Indic Languages 69,542
Speak English "very well" 53,329
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 16,213
Other Indo-European Languages 103,627
Speak English "very well" 76,039
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 27,588
Telugu 83,920
Speak English "very well" 71,267
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 12,653
Tamil 69,500
Speak English "very well" 59,305
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 10,195
Malayalam, Kannada, or Other Dravidian Languages 45,251
Speak English "very well" 37,013
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 8,238
Chinese (including Mandarin, Cantonese) 1,275,479
Speak English "very well" 614,164
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 661,315
Japanese 121,619
Speak English "very well" 68,977
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 52,642
Korean 357,077
Speak English "very well" 160,626
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 196,451
Hmong 74,009
Speak English "very well" 44,236
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 29,773
Vietnamese 569,306
Speak English "very well" 231,366
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 337,940
Khmer 66,884
Speak English "very well" 32,377
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 34,507
Thai, Lao, or Other Tai-Kadai Languages 80,348
Speak English "very well" 39,350
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 40,998
Other Languages of Asia 71,712
Speak English "very well" 38,360
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 33,352
Tagalog (including Filipino) 760,215
Speak English "very well" 506,250
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 253,965
Ilocano, Samoan, Hawaiian, or Other Austronesian Languages 107,387
Speak English "very well" 72,112
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 35,275
Arabic 218,600
Speak English "very well" 150,497
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 68,103
Hebrew 46,260
Speak English "very well" 39,392
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 6,868
Amharic, Somali, or Other Afro-Asiatic Languages 58,698
Speak English "very well" 36,259
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 22,439
Yoruba, Twi, Igbo, or Other Languages of Western Africa 35,360
Speak English "very well" 27,657
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 7,703
Swahili or Other Languages of Central, Eastern, and Southern Africa 22,816
Speak English "very well" 19,279
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 3,537
Native Languages of North America 9,201
Speak English "very well" 7,598
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 1,603
Other and Unspecified Languages 38,132
Speak English "very well" 19,181
Speak English less than “very well” (LEP) 18,951
%
Field 306 100%
Field 307 55.6%
Field 308 44.4%
Field 310 100%
Field 310 61.1%
Field 310 38.9%
Field 313 100%
Field 314 86.3%
Field 315 13.7%
Field 316 100%
Field 316 78.7%
Field 316 21.3%
Field 319 100%
Field 319 83.6%
Field 319 16.4%
Field 322 100%
Field 322 72.9%
Field 322 27.1%
Field 325 100%
Field 325 88.4%
Field 325 11.6%
Field 328 100%
Field 328 86.1%
Field 328 13.9%
Field 331 100%
Field 331 54.8%
Field 331 45.2%
Field 334 100%
Field 334 73.8%
Field 334 26.2%
Field 337 100%
Field 337 63.7%
Field 337 36.3%
Field 340 100%
Field 340 58.9%
Field 340 41.1%
Field 343 100%
Field 343 61.6%
Field 343 38.4%
Field 346 100%
Field 346 72.8%
Field 346 27.2%
Field 349 100%
Field 349 83.1%
Field 349 16.9%
Field 352 100%
Field 352 73.6%
Field 352 26.4%
Field 355 100%
Field 355 59.6%
Field 355 40.4%
Field 358 100%
Field 358 73.9%
Field 358 26.1%
Field 361 100%
Field 361 76.7%
Field 361 23.3%
Field 364 100%
Field 364 73.4%
Field 364 26.6%
Field 367 100%
Field 367 84.9%
Field 367 15.1%
Field 370 100%
Field 370 85.3%
Field 370 14.7%
Field 373 100%
Field 373 81.8%
Field 373 18.2%
Field 376 100%
Field 376 48.2%
Field 376 51.8%
Field 379 100%
Field 379 56.7%
Field 379 43.3%
Field 382 100%
Field 382 45.0%
Field 382 55.0%
Field 385 100%
Field 385 59.8%
Field 385 40.2%
Field 388 100%
Field 388 40.6%
Field 388 59.4%
Field 391 100%
Field 391 48.4%
Field 391 51.6%
Field 394 100%
Field 394 49.0%
Field 394 51.0%
Field 397 100%
Field 397 53.5%
Field 397 46.5%
Field 400 100%
Field 400 66.6%
Field 400 33.4%
Field 403 100%
Field 403 67.2%
Field 403 32.8%
Field 406 100%
Field 406 68.8%
Field 406 31.2%
Field 409 100%
Field 409 85.2%
Field 409 14.8%
Field 412 100%
Field 412 61.8%
Field 412 38.2%
Field 415 100%
Field 415 78.2%
Field 415 21.8%
Field 418 100%
Field 418 84.5%
Field 418 15.5%
Field 421 100%
Field 421 82.6%
Field 421 17.4%
Field 424 100%
Field 424 50.3%
Field 424 49.7%
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
 
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Educational Attainment Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 9,551,827
Less than high school diploma 30.5%
High school diploma or GED 19.6%
Some college or associate's degree 17.6%
Bachelor's degree 18.4%
Graduate or professional degree 13.8%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 70.9%
Bachelor's degree or higher 31.0%
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2022 -5.4%
% change: 1990-2000 44.3%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2022 104.8%
% change: 1990-2000 76.6%
Educational Attainment by U.S. Citizenship Status (foreign-born adults, age 25 and older)

Note: 1) Data for Alaska, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2018-2022 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2022 ACS. 2) The letter N Indicates that a number could not be provided by the Census Bureau because the number of sample cases was too small for this state.

 
Naturalized citizens (%) 5,444,060
Less than high school diploma 22.4%
High school diploma or GED 18.6%
Some college or associate's degree 21.4%
Bachelor's degree 22.4%
Graduate or professional degree 15.2%
Noncitizens (%) 4,107,767
Less than high school diploma 41.3%
High school diploma or GED 21%
Some college or associate's degree 12.5%
Bachelor's degree 13.1%
Graduate or professional degree 12.1%
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 17,314,946
Less than high school diploma 6.9%
High school diploma or GED 21.0%
Some college or associate's degree 32.5%
Bachelor's degree 24.8%
Graduate or professional degree 14.8%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Nothing  
Nothing  
Educational Attainment: Change over Time  
Adults with no high school diploma  
% change: 2000-2011 -35.5%
% change: 1990-2000 -19.6%
Adults with a bachelor's degree or higher  
% change: 2000-2011 64.0%
% change: 1990-2000 19.1%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 7,001,114
Less than high school diploma 44.1%
High school diploma or GED 15.9%
Some college or associate's degree 18.6%
Bachelor's degree 13.6%
Graduate or professional degree 7.9%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 62.4%
Bachelor's degree or higher 26.4%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 14,310,486
Less than high school diploma 13.0%
High school diploma or GED 22.2%
Some college or associate's degree 35.6%
Bachelor's degree 18.9%
Graduate or professional degree 10.3%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Foreign Born
Population (age 25 and older) 4,635,457
Less than high school diploma 46.1%
High school diploma or GED 16.1%
Some college or associate's degree 19.5%
Bachelor's degree 11.7%
Graduate or professional degree 6.7%
% Foreign Born among Adults with  
Less than high school diploma 48.1%
Bachelor's degree or higher 19.5%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
U.S. Born
Population (age 25 and older) 14,044,712
Less than high school diploma 16.4%
High school diploma or GED 24.4%
Some college or associate's degree 34.2%
Bachelor's degree 16.4%
Graduate or professional degree 8.6%
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

Sources: Migration Policy Institute tabulations of the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) and Decennial Census. Unless stated otherwise, 2022 data are from the one-year ACS file. For information about ACS definitions, click here. For ACS methodology, sampling error, and nonsampling error, click here. Estimates from 1990 and 2000 Decennial Census data as well as ACS microdata are from Steven Ruggles, Sarah Flood, Matthew Sobek, Daniel Backman, Annie Chen, Grace Cooper, Stephanie Richards, Renae Rogers, and Megan Schouweiler. IPUMS USA: Version 14.0 [dataset]. Minneapolis, MN: IPUMS, 2023. https://doi.org/10.18128/D010.V14.0​.

Definitions

  • The term "foreign born" refers to people residing in the United States at the time of the population survey who were not U.S. citizens at birth. The foreign-born population includes naturalized U.S. citizens, lawful permanent immigrants (or green-card holders), refugees and asylees, certain legal nonimmigrants (including those on student, work, or some other temporary visas), and persons residing in the country without authorization.
  • The term "U.S. born" refers to people residing in the United States who were U.S. citizens in one of three categories: people born in one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia; people born in U.S. Insular Areas such as Puerto Rico or Guam; or people who were born abroad to at least one U.S. citizen parent.
  • The term limited English proficient (LEP) refers to any person age 5 and older who reported speaking English “not at all,” “not well,” or “well” on their survey questionnaire. Persons who speak only English or who report speaking English “very well” are considered proficient in English.

Data-related notes

  • The letter N indicates that an estimate could not be provided by the Census Bureau because the number of sample cases was too small for this state.
  • For “English proficiency of the foreign born by U.S. citizenship status” and “Educational Attainment by U.S. Citizenship Status”: Data for Alaska, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the Census Bureau's pooled 2018-2022 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2022 ACS. 
  • For “Language Spoken at Home (detailed, by English proficiency)”: Data for Alaska, Arkansas, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming are from the U.S. Census Bureau's pooled 2018-2022 American Community Survey (ACS). Data for the United States overall and for the remaining states are from the 2022 ACS.